I finally got to have my panniculectomy and am happy beyond my expectations. I knew that it was something I wanted but did not realize how it would impact my life. I feel so very much better but would be lying if I said that I don't enjoy the compliments and attention that it has brought to me. It has definitely been a morale booster. I am going to love going to Kennywood this summer, the only thing that could make me happier at this point is having a breast lift, but that will have to wait. Until then I am happy and content.I am currently looking into info regarding abdominoplasty, to help remove the flap that the sudden weight loss has left. I am looking for surgeons in my area, loss of work time, insurance coverage, effectiveness and,of course, alternatives. I am also interested in a surgeon that can tell me if the way my body is reacting is normal. I am having alot of problems with acid-reflux that I never had prior to surgery, there alot of foods that I absolutely can not eat and it seems that I have an easier time eating cold foods than hot, also sweet foods are easier than others. I still can not eat carrots, green peppers,broccoli,
cauliflower,cucumbers, eggs, pizza, hamburgers,or absolutely anything fried.
I have alot of problems with alot of fruits also, like apples, oranges, grapefruit,grapes, bananas. All of these things are foods that I love. I am not sure if these are foods I am allergic to (I do have alot of food allergies)or if there is something going on. My PCP seems like he doesn't want to be bothered and has told me if I can find a surgeon, find out what I need him(my PCP) to do and he will help, meanwhile, how do I find that surgeon???? I have come this far alone and really am tired of it, can someone help me out?
I have a new PCP now, so maybe (just maybe) she will help me with this part of my journey. I have been under alot of personal stress lately and have put on 20 pounds. So I have 100 pounds I would like to lose, however, having been 400 pounds I guess being 223 for a short time is something I can live with (temporarily).
Well, here I am 6 years post-op and I have gained 20 MORE pounds. I am trying the Change One Program. My doctor recommended Bariatrics at UPMC but all that paper work, do you honestly remember the date and length of every weight loss method you attempted and how much you lost and for how long? I sure can't. This has been a 33 year struggle, and I can't remember all of that. The hospital I work for has opened a new Bariatric Unit, I am going to look into that, maybe since I work there they can work with me.
I had a consult with Dr Patel (AGH) concerning a revision to RNY. He confirmed what I have been reading that the VGB usually only lasts about 5 years (at best). I still think that if I would have had a support program or follow up program to participate in that I could have made this whole thing work.
Dr Patel said that they have 100% success at getting insurances to approve the revision. I had BC/BS when I had the VGB (under a different employer tho') so I can only hope that he is correct in saying that they may not make me jump through all the hoops again. They are fully aware of my family health history. My PCP is 100% behind me on this, I just wish she was in the same "Health Care System" so that the surgeons would keep her informed and she could follow up on me in the hospital. This is where we ran into trouble with my Mum, in that they would not consult her Dr (when she unexpectedly ended up in AGH) and I kept feeling like they were experimenting on her and not listening to me. I think it is wrong that they refuse to consult your PCP if he/she is outside of their health system. I truly miss the "good ol' days" where your family dr's word was gospel. They tell me now "We can't consult them, they aren't in our system" PICK THE PHONE UP AND CALL THEM!!!! Anyhow, maybe this will be different (I can only hope eh?)
Dr Patel asked me to finish this sentence "I am disappointed in the VGB surgery....." Because I regained so much weight (I am 292.1 right now). I am disappointed that I am able to eat as much as I do, although it still isn't near as much as I used to be able to eat.....can't figure that out....I know I only eat a fraction of what I used to eat (when I weighed 385) and I do mean a fraction, probably 2000 cal (at least) less a day, so why am I regaining so quickly????
I am scheduled for an endoscopy on July 15th which will show what is going on with the VGB, if there is a staple line rupture or whatever.
I hope if I get approved they will give me sometime to work things out here at work, I have only been here for 1 year and have had 2 leave of absences already (1 to take care of my Mum and 1 when I fell and the dr pulled me off work for 2 weeks). I am sure they will work with me tho' (just have to save up some money so nothing gets shut off while I am off work....only have 1 week of vacation left for this year.)
Well I am 2 weeks post-op & feel wonderful. All of the post surgery puffiness is gone, we pulled the 2nd drain today (having that sticking out of your pants is a tad bit embarrassing) & I am starting to lose weight. The toughest part? Getting all the water in, but I keep trying. Darcy doesn't realize that all the jello, popsicles & iced tea(decaf of course) count towards that so she really rides me very hard. I am glad that she is watching out for me, but I do think I am doing ok getting everything in like I should.
Will be glad to start on soft foods, I truly think the reason I feel a little dizzy all the time is the lack of calories,because otherwise I feel great. No hunger, no fever, no pain.
Here I am 5 months post op, I have lost 65 lbs. I feel wonderful. Am going to have to go clothes shopping soon, at least for work clothes, my scrub pants are falling off, not very professional.
I am working hard at eating the amount of protein they recommend & getting my fluids in. Hard to get the fluids in tho', I work midnight. It is hard to drink alot at work, not like I am at a desk where I can leave the water bottle beside me, can't carry a water bottle around in the lab. Since I can't drink for 30-45 minutes after eating it is hard to drink enough, I eat when I go home then I don't want to put anything into my mouth for a long time (it hurts to drink too soon) then I go to bed around 1pm. I get back up at 9pm, get ready & leave for work by 10p, I drink on my way into work & on my drive home too, usually I get in about 3 20oz bottles of water a day. I seem to be doing ok tho, staying healthy.
Yesterday was my 8 month anniversary. I saw my PCP on Tues, officially my weight is 206, down 86 lbs!!!! Still short of my short-term goal, I truly want to break that 200 mark. I have been doing my exercises at least 3 days a week (yes I know it should be daily but Rome wasn't built in a day & habits don't develop that quickly). I do feel alot better, I am not quite so tired all the time. I want to lose at least 20 more before I go see Dr C in May (notice I said "at least" I would love it to be more, but I also know that now that I am out of the "honeymoon phase" things will slow down a bit) have to say that I haven't noticed any slowing down yet.
Well, here I am 1 year and 17 days post. I am down 110 lbs, still 32 lbs short of goal but I am getting there. Important thing to remember: I didn't gain it all in a day surely not going to lose it that way (altho' NOW it seems like I did sure didn't feel like it a year ago but now it does). I am wearing a smaller pant size than I did in high school altho' I am 7 lbs heavier than I was in high school. I tried on clothes last week, needed something to wear for job interviews, and I actually looked in the mirror. I am sure that most of you can understand that. Before,when I shopped, I had to have someone along to tell me what something looked like. When they would say to me "just look in the mirror" my pat response was "If I look in the mirror I won't buy ANYTHING". But I actually looked in the mirror and liked what I saw!!!!! I still need my plastics but I am happy with the things are going and the way I look.
I am speaking to my surgeon today and asking his advice about a plastic surgeon. I would love to have total body lift but I have to see what my insurance will pay for.
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- Carnation - Sugar free instant breakfast
- Nature's Plus - Hema-Plex
Weight Loss Survey Responses
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- Health - Educating People about being overweight and having the surgery.
- Cats - I have 4 cats, ages 17 down to 8 years, our little BB died last year of a digestive tumor.
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- Billiards & Pool - Shooting Pool
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- Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender - Married and happy, 7 years in June
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Surgeon: Joseph Colella, M.D.
I had Dr Shelksohn,in Tucson Arizona. I thought he was the greatest. He was a straight forward type of guy with a dry sense of humor (reminded me of my grandfather). He said it like it was, what I could and couldn't do. He didn't sugar coat any of it. He wouldn't let me have anything by mouth for the 3 days I was in the hospital, said he felt it gave the stomach a better chance to heal. To tell you the truth, I could have cared less about eating anyways,it would have just been one more nuisance. He couldn't emphasize enough that the most important thing postsurgery was CHEWING my food, and chewing it well. The only problem I had was, since I had my surgery through a weight loss program out west and I live back east, there was no real follow up and my PCP was totally unaware as to my needs, the only thing he did for me was take a peek at my incision one time (could do that for myself!!!). The rest of it was a solo trip. Dr. Shelksohn was a wonderful man and a wonderful surgeon, my scar healed beautifully and my healing went well.
- I had Dr Colella & Dr Patel for my revision. I can't say enough good about them. Dr Patel is no longer with Dr C, he has gone on to start his own branch of bariatric surgery. Dr C now has Dr Williams as a Fellow, I love both of them. They have been compassionate & understanding. When I was scared they were there, as were their staff, to answer questions & soothe my nerves. My scar looks great, at least as great as any scar that goes from the bottom of your breastbone to your belly button can look. I feel wonderful, they have truly given me a new life. The only negative thing I have found,so far, is that I NEVER wait less than 2 hours to be seen. One time was an emergency visit, that I can understand, I was being squeezed in. But my regular appointment was also a 2 hour wait. I appreciate that they always make me feel important & I never feel like they are rushing me through my appointment, but my time is valuable too.
Blue Cross, Select Blue
I had no problem getting my insurance to pay for this insurance, in fact the program directors said they never had such an easy time getting an insurance to pay. I would most definitley recommend this insurance